Adolescence: Theory and Development

Discipline: Psychology
Instructor: Schofield
Credits: 3
Day: B
Start: 1425
End: 1540
Field Work: Day 1 - Wednesday, 24 September | Ireland Download Syllabus

This course focuses on the period of life in which individuals transition from childhood to being considered by their society as full adults. The precise age span during which this transition occurs differs between cultures, but it is generally the period of roughly a decade from the beginning of the teenage years through the early to mid 20’s. The class explores the developmental changes in individuals’ physical, cognitive and social functioning during this period as well as the social experiences common to it. Attention will be devoted to issues that often cause problems during this period (e.g. adolescent pregnancy, drug and alcohol use, violence and gang membership) as well as to the way that family and peer relationships, societal conditions such as poverty, and cultural norms regarding this period of life shape the experiences of young people and their developmental outcomes.

Field Work

Country: Ireland
Day: 1 - Wednesday, 24 September

Go to University College Dublin (UCD) to meet with Drs. Fitzgerald and Dooley to hear about and discuss with them the results of a recent large scale survey about the lives and problems of Irish adolescents and youth.  While at (UCD), each SAS student will be expected to find 3 University College Dublin students and do a 10 minute interview with them about college life in Ireland, which we will later compare to the answers to the same questions from students enrolled in the SAS class. Lunch will be eaten on campus at a "student hangout". In the afternoon, after a campus tour, we will meet with representatives of a large counseling center for Irish teens to learn about how they approach helping Irish adolescent with various kinds of problems. Academic Objectives: 1. Understand the kinds of problems Irish adolescents and youth face 2. Learn about successful approaches to preventing such problems 3. Learn about how the institutions serving adolescents, such as schools or counseling centers, function in Ireland.